Teachers & Staff

All GMA Primary and Elementary classroom lead teachers are either AMI or AMS Montessori certified. Your child’s teacher is trained to observe the individual interests and needs of each child, demonstrate the correct use of classroom materials, assess the child’s progress and needs, and guide the child to appropriate activities. Each classroom has one or more assistants who support the teacher and students. All share the love of children and desire to assist young people as they grow toward their potential.

  • Brian Gordon

    Executive Director

    Brian Gordon

    Brian Gordon was appointed as Executive Director in March 2014. Brian brings over 15 years of leadership, management, and business experience to GMA. Originally from the Springfield, Missouri area, Brian graduated high school and attended the United States Military Academy at West Point, NY where he graduated with a BS in Computer Science/Engineering. From there Brian served as an Intelligence Officer in the US Army for nearly seven years. After serving in the military, Brian worked for WalMart corporate for six years in various management positions including: Real Estate, Information Systems, and Finance. In April 2011, Brian left WalMart to start Conveniently Natural, a health focused meal delivery service, in Kansas City with his wife, Kim. Before becoming Executive Director, Brian was an active volunteer in the school serving on the GMA Board of Directors and the GMA Parent Council. Brian is very excited and humbled to collaborate with parents, staff, and children as we expand on the unique heritage that is GMA. In addition to his wife, Kim, Brian has three daughters, Isabelle, Adrienne, and Avery, all of whom attend GMA.

  • Erin Purdon

    Program Director

    Erin brings to GMA more than four years of experience at Raintree Montessori School in Lawrence, Kansas, public school substitute teaching, and early childhood care. Erin received a bachelor’s degree in social work from Pittsburg State University and also holds a Child Development Associate Credential. Erin worked as a social worker for five years in Wichita and Kansas City advocating for children with developmental disabilities and senior citizens. Prior to being appointed to the position of Program Director, Erin was a member of the GMA Board. Erin is very excited to contribute her love of children, her passion for Montessori education, and her understanding of the Montessori classroom to help GMA grow. Erin joined GMA in 2014.

  • Celeste Seay

    Office Assistant

    Celeste Seay

    Celeste joined the administrative staff in the front office in August 2016. Her background is colorful, including aircraft mechanic, chef, muralist, writer, framer, draftsman, caterer, guest lecturer, baker, executive secretary, landscape designer, project manager, grant-writer and editor. She has owned businesses and served on numerous boards.

  • Laura Moe

    Toddler Community Lead Teacher

    Laura Moe

    Laura works at GMA as the Lead Teacher in the Toddler Community.  Laura began at GMA in October of 2014 with over four years experience working with children including Children’s Village Montessori. In addition to an associates of arts degree, Laura completed the first half of AMI Assistants to Infancy training in the summer of 2016 in Denver, Colorado.

  • Jenna Courter

    Toddler Community Assistant Teacher

    Jenna Courter

    A registered dietitian, Jenna obtained her B.S. from the University of Central Missouri and interned through Iowa State University. She worked at St. Luke’s East and later in St. Joseph counseling pregnant mothers in the WIC program. Before joining GMA in February of 2017, Jenna enjoyed nearly three years as a stay-at-home mom.

  • Tammy Brand

    Children's House 1 Lead Teacher

    Tammy Brand

    Tammy is the lead teacher in Children’s House 1. She received her Montessori certification through the American Montessori Society (AMS). Before she followed her dream of teaching, she worked as a broker in the health insurance industry for the over 30 years. Tammy has over eight years of Montessori teaching experience and has been with GMA since 2010.

  • Shawna Chambers

    Children’s House 1 Assistant Teacher

    Shawna Chambers

    Shawna has a bachelors degree from the University of Central Missouri in Education. Prior to working at GMA, she worked at several childhood facilities and preschools. Shawna has a background in Early Childhood and Special Education. She has been with GMA since 2006.

  • Andrea Allen

    Children's House 2 Lead Teacher

    Andrea Allen

    Andrea received her American Montessori Society (AMS) Early Childhood certification from the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies in Boulder. She has a B.A. in Creative Writing from the University of Kansas and an M.A. in Education with a Montessori emphasis from Saint Catherine University. Andrea comes to Global Montessori Academy from Raintree Montessori School in Lawrence, where she worked for over six years and was a primary lead teacher for three years. Andrea joined GMA in 2014.

  • Kathryn Meadows

    Children's House 2 Assistant Teacher

    Kathryn Meadows

    A Kansas native, Kathryn went to high school in Overland Park and then to University of Kansas, receiving a baccalaureate in Public Administration. She also minored in behavioral science and early childhood education. During the time she was a student, she worked at a Montessori school, and when the opportunity arose, she came on board with us in June 2016.

  • Colleen Kelley

    Children's House 3 Lead Teacher

    Colleen Kelley

    Colleen came to GMA in August 2016 with 35 years experience teaching. She graduated from Avila University where she also received her AMI certification under an instructor who had been trained by Dr. Montessori herself. Colleen taught at private schools for seven years and then at the magnet Holliday School, a public Montessori school where she taught for 28 years. After retiring from the public school system, Colleen jumped at the opportunity to join GMA.

  • Zoë Marinovich

    Children's House 3 Assistant Teacher

    Zoë joined GMA in 2017. A true-born native, she was raised in Kansas City—both states. When she went to college, she chose a school distant from home, the College of the Redwoods in Eureka, California where she studied Early Childhood Education. She returned to the area to finish her degree at Rockhurst University, switching majors from Education to Communication Sciences and Disorders. It wasn’t until after she graduated that she realized she wanted to work with children in a Montessori environment.

  • Brandy Parr

    Lower Elementary Lead Teacher

    Brandy Parr

    Brandy is the Lower Elementary teacher for ages 6–9. She holds a Montessori Elementary Diploma from Association Montessori Internationale (AMI). She also holds K–6 elementary teaching credentials in both Missouri and Kansas and an Early Childhood Credential in Missouri. She has a B.A. from Kansas State University and received her traditional elementary teacher training at the University of Redlands in Redlands, California. Brandy has been teaching for 12 years and has been at Global Montessori Academy since 2008.

  • Tommy Capps

    Lower Elementary Assistant Teacher

    Tommy Capps

    Tommy is the Lower Elementary assistant teacher at GMA. He has a bachelors degree in philosophy from the University of Central Missouri and is an accomplished guitarist. Tommy has been with GMA since 2013.

  • Libby McFarland

    Upper Elementary Teacher

    Libby McFarland

    Libby is the upper elementary teacher. Libby obtained her AMI Elementary teaching credential from Montessori Northwest Institute. Upon completion of her training and student teaching, Libby is GMA’s first upper elementary class teacher  beginning in August 2016. Libby graduated from University of Missouri-Kansas City with a BA in French in 2006. She completed the Montessori Foundations and Philosophy course through MEPI in the fall of 2007. Libby joined GMA in 2010.

  • Diane Deachan

    Floating Assistant Teacher

    Diane Deachan

    Diane joined GMA in August of 2015 with extensive educational experience. She worked for seven years as a special education teacher after earning her bachelor’s degree in special education in 2005 from Fontbonne University. Prior to that, she was a special education para-educator for ten years.

  • Kanuangnit Fetterer

    Floating Assistant Teacher

    Kanuangnit Fetterer

    Nit joined GMA in July 2016, having taught history at an elementary school in her native Thailand. She also worked as a kindergarten aide for 13 years in Alabama and Virginia. More recently, she taught at Brookridge Day School for three years and supported the after-school program. A master at organizing, she has traveled extensively in Asia and in the United States, and broadens the cultural horizons of the staff as a floating teaching assistant.